Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Connecting the (birding) dots this week

On Sunday, I topped up our bird feeders as usual. Yesterday I made a mental note that the feeder closer to the pond was nearly empty again. And I thought it odd that the feeders hanging outside the kitchen windows were still nearly full. I didn't spend much time dwelling on it, and went on about my business.

This morning at breakfast, Chris pointed to a tree outside and said, "There's that bird again! I saw it the other day and couldn't figure out what it was." We started rifling through our bird books, eventually identifying a Sharp-shinned Hawk (a new sighting, added to our Bird List!).

Reading on, I suddenly understood why the bird feeders had gone quiet this week:
  • The Audobon Society Field Guide to North American Birds: The Sharp-shin preys on small birds such as sparrows and warblers...
  • eNature: The smallest and most numerous of the accipiters, the Sharp-shinned Hawk feeds mainly on birds, which it catches in sudden and swift attacks.
  • National Audobon Society Field Guide to the Mid-Atlantic States: Expert at capturing small birds, often at feeders.
Keeping my fingers crossed for our "regulars," that the Sharp-shin gets bored and moves on!


Mike said...

Yes, Sharp-shinned Hawks love bird feeders!

10,000 Birds

mon@rch said...

I get both coopers and Sharpies at my feeder! Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!v

Laura said...

Mike, Mon@arch, thanks for your comments! It looks like the sharp-shinned hawk has moved on. The little birds enjoyed a peaceful Thanksgiving feast today! But it was fun to see a new bird regardless.